Ever since the government shutdown last week, the GOP has been screaming that the Democrats need to “compromise” to open it back up. That sounds reasonable enough and that’s why they keep saying it. In fact, Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Rand Paul (R-KY) were even caught by a “hot mic” (meaning they didn’t know they were being recorded) discussing how the concept of “negotiating” would test well in polls so that’s why they should hammer that home if they wanted to “win” this fight. Apparently the concept of shutting the government down on purpose didn’t test well with focus groups.
First of all, the Democrats have already compromised enough. Even far-right Republican Doug Lamborn (R-CO) admitted recently that the Democrat concession to keep the sequester cuts in place for the new budget resolution is a major win for Republicans. Secondly, the GOP can’t even negotiate with its own party in good faith. The Tea Party faction is the tail that’s wagging the rest of the elephant. Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and the traditional repubs have the majority, yet these pseudo-anarchists cripple them. This is truly the death of “majority rules”.
Despite John Boehner claiming the contrary, multiple media outlets are reporting that there are enough Republicans willing to vote with the Democrats to reopen the government, yet Boehner won’t allow that vote to even happen. As the President has said, Speaker Boehner should prove it by letting the vote happen. But he can’t because as Tea Party Congressman Marlin Stutzman recently said, “We’re not going to be disrespected, we have to get something out of this and I don’t even know what that is”. If they don’t know, how are we supposed to negotiate any further? How did they bring us to this point with no “plan B” in place? Did they really think the White House would cave on Obamacare while its namesake was still in the Oval Office?
But if the GOP wants to “negotiate”, the Dems should do it by fighting “fire with fire” or in this case “fantasies with fantasies”. The GOP has made a demand that flies in the face of current law and popular public opinion by trying to defund Obamacare. So the Democrats should do the same thing… we should demand a ban on all guns or we won’t fund the government either! Conservatives would hate this proposal even more then we hate the idea of getting rid of Obamacare. We could tell them “hey, let’s compromise… instead of banning all guns, let’s just ban all assault weapons and any gun that has a vowel in its name”. They would tell us it’s completely unreasonable, goes against the law & public opinion and that they refuse to compromise on that topic at all!!!
At that point, the Democrats win. Both sides would have to drop their ideological pipe dreams and focus on reasonable budget issues. At that point, the Dems win again since they’ve already compromised on the sequester cuts. Then the government could re-open and we could go back to the usual D.C. stalemates… but at least Smokey Bear would be back at work. Or John Boehner could skip all of this and just do the right thing by letting the majority rule. But since Speaker Boehner seems to be allergic to the greater good, the Dems should just “compromise” and force their hand… then the rest of us need to clean the house in 2014!